The City of Lincoln Council launched an online consultation to quiz people on who they think should pay for the city’s CCTV service, or whether they should scrap the service entirely.
Following the government’s spending review, the council needs to save around £2.25 million by 2013/14, and CCTV is one area where the council looks to make savings.
The City Council funds the CCTV service at a net cost of around £434,000 per year, with third-party contributions of around 17% of the total cost.
The staffed CCTV control room receives images from 133 council and third-party owned cameras, as well as audio signals from 200 radios located around the city.
Live incidents and images can be tracked and recorded and control room staff communicate directly with Lincolnshire Police to report incidents.
Recordings are used as evidence by the police and other enforcement agencies.
CCTV staff review footage following incidents, and provide copies to the police and other enforcement agencies as required.
CCTV can also help with other incidents, such as helping to find missing people and calling emergency services to accidents.
Besides securing additional funding from other organisations such as Lincolnshire Police for the CCTV service, the City Council is also looking to transfer it to another provider or cease it entirely.
The Lincolnite understands that initial discussions with Lincolnshire Police to contribute towards the CCTV service have been unfruitful, as the force also has to make significant savings over the coming years.
City Council Leader Darren Grice said he wants to take a realistic look at the service:
“How important is CCTV to our residents, do they want a 24-hour monitored service, do they think any other organisations should contribute towards it?
“We’re also asking businesses and other organisations, including Lincolnshire Police, as well as our own staff, for their opinions so we can get a rounded picture before making any decisions.
“This is about having a proper debate that will help inform any final decisions about what we do with the service in the future.”
The survey can be filled in from City of Lincoln Council’s website.